Should God of War Ragnarok have Time-Travel Story DLC?

God of War Ragnarok was a monumental and fitting conclusion to the Norse chapter – the characters, the writing, the mythology all come to life in an interesting way, all masterfully crafted. On the whole, however, it was everything: a chapter in Kratos’ life, albeit undoubtedly an important one, that opened many doors for the future.

I’d love to explore more of the Norse realms, as would the next fan. Finally, many questions remained unanswered that perhaps time travel could explore, like more about the relationship between Kratos and Faye or, more importantly, the death of Brok . So the franchise has used it before Should God of War Ragnarok have time travel story DLC?

***Spoilers for God of War (2018) and God of War Ragnarok Episodes***

Time travel is chaotic and unpredictable

Time travel is a messy affair: God of War Ragnarok
Image via Santa Monica Studio

Putting aside the inherent problems of time travel (paradoxes, etc.), how would time travel work in the first place? There are some examples of time travel shenanigans like Thor beating Jormungandr so hard he was sent back in time and puzzles in God of War (2018) involving temporal magic. I would argue that neither are viable avenues for some sort of time travel DLC.

In Thor’s case, his attack on Jormungandr was so devastating that it shattered Yggdrasil and disrupted the passage of time. He wounded the World Tree, the very force that holds the realms in place. Luckily, the realms are still functional, but it suggests enough disruption could destroy the realms altogether.

Temporal magic is no different; In fact, it has its own unpleasant side effect. According to Mimir, the High Vanir gods used to try magic that stopped time, but soon recognized their magic not Stop Skoll and Hati from chasing the sun and moon – one of the many signs of Ragnarok.

If Kratos could travel back in time, a power not even the Norns possess, he faces the same problems as everyone else: changing the future. Kratos could start Ragnarok much sooner, even before Atreus was born, and now we have to deal with a timeline where Odin wins. Is Brok’s return worth all the death and destruction? It’s as if the authors are silently preventing the use of time travel in any meaningful way.

Thematic dissonance

Kratos' family in God of War Ragnarok
Image Credit: Santa Monica Studio via Twinfinite

Numerous themes are explored in God of War and Ragnarok – two of the most prevalent being consequences and redemption. The Norse realms are littered with memories of past mistakes.

Take Mimir, for example, who enslaved a Lyngbakr as an oil supply for Odin’s lanterns, or his hand in building mining machines that spewed black smoke in Svartalfheim. Of course, Sindri’s failure to find Brok’s entire soul also ultimately deprived Brok of any afterlife he might otherwise have had.

These flaws can certainly be fixed with a quick rework, but these kinds of hand gestures cheapen the narrative and weaken character development. Why grow when time travel is readily available?

Instead, God of War Ragnarok pushes this narrative that some form of redemption can be earned by improving the situation to leave it better than it was. Does it absolve the characters of their sins? No, but at least a path to healing is being prepared.

Give me sequels, not DLC

Travel to different Norse realms in God of War Ragnarok
Image Credit: Santa Monica Studio via Twinfinite

God of War Ragnarok answered many of my burning questions, but left just as many questions. Where will Atreus land? What will Kratos do with the Norse realms? And of course, what about Sindri? Answering these questions through DLC doesn’t quite suit me. I would argue that these issues would be better dealt with in sequels where time and effort would be better invested.

What is interesting is that both Sindri and Freya share similar arcs as Kratos at different points in his past. Sindri as he is now witnessed Kratos until the fall of the Greek Empire, while Freya ended her journey by unleashing revenge and revenge.

In other words, I see the potential for Sindri to possibly be a villain in the future. Revenge can turn into vengeance so easily, especially when Sindri is burdened with so much regret. Odin may have pulled the trigger, but it was Sindri’s fault that prevented Brok from having an afterlife.

DLC is unlikely anyway

Brok in god put to rest for the war ragnarok
Image Credit: Santa Monica Studio via Twinfinite

Even if DLC were on the horizon, time travel to save Brok is pretty unlikely. Don’t believe me, trust the director of God of War Ragnarok himself, Eric Williams. In an interview with IGN’s podcast Beyond, Cory Barlog had three conditions for the sequel: Atreus must go, Ragnarok will happen, and Brok must die.

According to Eric Williams, this is because Brok is “the family dog,” which is an apt description considering how powerful and heartbreaking his death is. He was the fun uncle with no filter but still had wisdom to offer whether you asked for it or not. Given that, and given Barlog’s reasoning for the end of the Norse story, it seems odd for Santa Monica Studio to take that back.

It pains me to say it, but God of War Ragnarok was not supposed to get any time travel DLC, and Brok should stay dead. In the words of Kratos, “Travelling through time is more trouble than it’s worth.” What do you think? What kind of DLC would you like to play? Let us know in the comments section below, or explore the relevant guides here at Twinfinite. Should God of War Ragnarok have Time-Travel Story DLC?

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